LUCENA CITY—Quezon province on Monday paid tribute to its outstanding son, former President Manuel L. Quezon, on his 135th birth anniversary despite the heavy rain spawned by Tropical Storm “Maring.”
“Even in the midst of storm, Quezonians will never fail to gather and honor the beloved son of the province,” Gov. David Suarez said in a speech during a program and floral offering at the Quezon Convention Center here. “We will continue the legacy of President Quezon in providing the people of this province with dedicated governance and faithful service to our constituents.”
Quezon was born on Aug. 19, 1878, in the small town of Baler, Aurora, which was then a part of Quezon province. He served as president of the Philippine Commonwealth and died in the United States on Aug. 1, 1944, at the age of 66.
Wreaths of flowers were offered before the bronze bust and life-size painting of Quezon on the stage of the multipurpose center. Bishop Emilio Marquez officiated the Mass before the ceremony.
With an imposing marble wall, the Quezon monument is on the fourth block of the 7-hectare Perez Park at the right side of the Capitol building. Commemoration rites were usually held at the shrine at the park, but strong rains forced event organizers to transfer the venue.
Monument from coins
The monument was built in 1954 from one-centavo bronze coins minted by the US government and circulated during the Commonwealth Period before World War II. The coins were donated by schoolchildren from all over the province.
A separate program was held in Barangay Ilayang Dupay here, where Quezon had held his first public office as “tiniente del barrio” or barangay captain. Mayor Roderick Alcala and other city officials, teachers and civic leaders attended.
Governor Suarez led provincial officials, military, police and multisectoral representatives in the tribute program and floral offering at the convention center. He announced a plan of the provincial government to establish an economic zone that aims to tap the rich resources of the province and provide jobs to the people. Delfin T. Mallari Jr., Inquirer Southern Luzon